The Abbey Newsletter

Volume 9, Number 2
Apr 1985


Literature

Selected Contents of Significant Publications

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Leather Conservation News #4, Winter 1984, is the last to be produced and edited by Sonja Fogle. The job will now be done on a volunteer basis, by rotation. This issue contains a report of the IIC adhesives congress (Paris, Sept.) and the ICOM Committee for Conservation meeting (Copenhagen, Sept.). Mary-Lou Florian has a one-page article on vegetable tannins, clarifying the difference between hydrolyzable and condensed tannins, with tests by which conservators can tell the difference. A summary of 24 research needs on the next page was compiled from the suggestions of participants at the June refresher course. Most of the issue is devoted to terminology with definitions drawn from different authorities identified for each entry as in the Roberts/Etherington dictionary, Bookbinding and the Conservation of Books. There is a list of subscribers.

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Book Arts Review, Jan. 1985 (v.4 #1), contains a report of "Horizons in Bookbinding" (April 8-14, Brighton, England) by Mindell Dubansky, and an illustrated article on binding structures for book artists, by Gary Frost. Issued by the Center for Book Arts (address is in the "Useful Addresses" list sent to subscribers in January).

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The Deckled Edge, newsletter of the Baltimore Area Conservation Group, v.5 #1, Spring 1985, has a 2-page listing of events, mostly local; reports of several events, including RBMS Midwinter, a Peter Waters talk, and a Washington Conservation Guild meeting; and an 8-page supplement consisting of detailed, illustrated instructions for making boxes in batches, by Jane Dalrymple.

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Binders' Guild Newsletter v.8 #2, March 1985, has three pages on goldbeating and reprints a 6-page article about the Newberry Library. An article on p. 11-14 describes (with diagrams) the improved historic bookbindery at Williamsburg, Virginia. The operations are described in detail. There is emphasis on historical accuracy and good communication with visitors.

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De Bookbinder v.3 #4, Nov. 1984 (from Vlaamse Handboekbindersgilde, Korenlei 21, 9000 Gent, Belgium) has on p. 7 a half-page article entitled "Karl Trobas en zijn papierwasmachine" (Karl Trobas and his paper washing machine). Trobas, who is in Graz, Austria, has invented a machine that uses a "speciaal produkt" said to be totally harmless to paper, called "Papercleaningssolvent." It allows books to be washed without taking them apart. Model 3 is not large: 860 mm x 690 mm and 350 mm high. It can neutralize, buffer or treat electrolytically 600-4000 pages at once. For more information write Karl Trobas, Leiter der Restaurieringswerkstätte am Steiermarkische Landesarchiv, Dr. Robert Graf Strasse 18, A8010 Gras A, Austria (tel. 76311 2739).

"Harmatan-Lader: van geit tot book," by Guy Dewitte, on p. 8-12, is an illustrated description of operations in this tannery. Like the rest of De Bookbinder, it is all in Dutch, unfortunately for us. There are reports of the Brighton conference, "Horizons in Bookbinding," and a 3-day workshop on gilding. The list of members shows only one member from the U.S., Sam Ellenport, of Boston.

Conferences & Professional Publications

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Dard Hunter Watermarks, by Douglas B. Stone and Hardev S. Dugal. (The Dard Hunter Collection at the Institute of Paper Chemistry, 1) Institute of Paper Chemistry, PO Box 1039, Appleton, WI 54912, 1984. $30. 92 pp. This series will take up various aspects of the Dard Hunter Collection, which is made up of items collected or made by Dard Hunter, and is part of the larger Dard Hunter Paper Museum (also called Dard Hunter Museum) at IPC. As the first in the series, it gives background information on Hunter' s life and the history of his collection, including the conservation work done by Doug Stone, the Friends group, the recent Museum Assessment Program survey and the ongoing assessment of the condition of the museum artifacts. Fifty-one watermarks made or modified by Hunter are reproduced in good detail, with 10 categories of information (e.g., dimensions, where found) on each. Bibliography and index.

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The History and Future Directions of Conservation Training in North America. (Proceedings of the 10th Conference on Training Programs, May 2-4, 1984, at the Fogg Museum) National Institute for the Conservation of Cultural Property (NIC), A&I-2225, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC 20560. The book and paper programs at Columbia and Queen's are described in two of the book's ten chapters.

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Conservation of Manuscripts and Paintings of Southeast Asia. 0.P. Agrawal. Butterworths, Borough Green, Sevenoaks, Kent TN15 8PH, England. $99.95. The history and conservation of works on birch bark, palm leaf, cloth and paper from SE Asia.

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Handmade Paper Today, a Worldwide Survey of Mills, Papers, Techniques and Usages, by Silvie Turner and Birgit Skiöld. Frederic C. Bell, New York (321 E. 43rd St., 10017), 1983. 280 pp. $45. Only tangentially relevant to conservation, but of impressive quality. An interesting passage from p. 89: "The symbol of infinity (infinity) has been adopted by the Arjomari Paper Co. In France today to symbolize the fact that their papers are made to conservation standards and guaranteed to last forever." the company has two addresses: PO Box 23-06, 3 rue duPont Lodi, 75006 Paris and R. K. Burt & Co., Ltd., 37 Union St., London SE1.

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University of Toronto Library. Report of the Preservation Committee: Preservation of Library Materials. 1984. "An excellent purchase as it is one of the few reports to give cost figures." --CAN. $5.00 from H. Davison, Chief Librarian's Office, University of Toronto Library, 130 St. George St., Toronto, Ont. M5S 1A5 Canada.

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An 8-page summary, with diagrams, of the Guild of Book Workers Third Seminar on Standards of Excellence in Hand Bookbinding, held in Pittsburgh in October, appears on p. 12-19 of the Canadian Bookbinders and Book Artists Guild Newsletter for Spring 1985. This is a 32-page issue, full of substance and with contributions from many members. Dues are $20 and individual issues $2. Write Editor, CBBAG, 26 Morningside Ave., Toronto, Ont. M6S 1C3, Canada.

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"Are So-called Reactive Sizes Really Cellulose Reactive?" by Peter Rohringer, Michael Bernheim, and Dietrich P. Werthemann. Tappi Journal 68 (1) 83-86, Jan. 1985. "The fiber supply situation, the need for closed water cycles, and in Europe, the shortage of kaolin will force several paper producers to switch their production from acidic to neutral or alkaline systems." This means use of alkylketene dimers, reputed to react chemically with cellulose. Because of recent observations that are hard to explain if this is true, the authors investigated and found there was little if any chemical interaction.

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"Michael Wilcox, Bookbinder," by Adam Smith. Ontario Craft 10 (1), 12-14, Spring 1985. Three large color pictures of his bindings (Leaves of Grass, Alice, & L'Art d'Aimer) illustrate this well-written article about the man and his work.

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My World of Bibliophile Binding, by Tini Miura, is available from the University of California Press for $125. It can also be ordered from: Tini Miura, c/o Mel Kavin, Kater-Crafts Bookbinders, 4860 Gregg Rd., Pico Rivera, CA 90660 (213/692-0665). the price went up from $100 on March 31.

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"Bookbinding: the Skill, the Trade, the Craft, and the Art," by Fritz Eberhardt. John and Mary's Journal [a publication of the Dickinson College Friends of the Library] No. 8, Winter, 1983, p. 24-29. A short but well-written history of hand binding after the advent of 19th century bookbinding machines; at the same time it strikes a blow for higher standards of excellence through serious education. The Eberhardtian humor is evident, especially in the description of Elbert Hubbard's approach to bookbinding.

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Recent Advances in Leather Conservation, proceedings of the June 1984 FAIC leather refresher course, will be published by the Foundation of the American Institute for Conservation in May 1985. The paperback book contains not only significant new developments in treatment, but also fundamental concepts and techniques for leather conservators. The transcribed presentations were given by Course Guides Betty H. Haines, H. A. B. van Soest and Pieter B. Hallebeek, as well as by Guest Lecturer Jesse Munn, and 16 of the other participants. An extensive leather bibliography by Mary Garbin and product data are included. The Editor is Sonja Fogle and the Assistant Editors are Toby Raphael and Katherine Singley. Till August 31, $10 + shipping; then $15. Make check out to AIC (3545 Williamsburg Lane NW, Washington, DC 20008).

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Fine Bookbinding in the 20th Century, by Roy Harley Lewis. In September, David Charles, publishers, were planning to bring it out in October with a price of about $20. Thirty-nine color and 80 black and white photos.

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"Restoring the Vatican's Priceless Treasures." American Printer, 193 (4): 74-76, July 1984. The Vatican Library has one of the world's largest collections of ancient manuscripts and books, some of which are often consulted by scholars. To reduce wear through use, facsimiles are made. Since these books cannot be removed from the library, the printers had to set up a complete scanning studio in the library.

Standards & Practical Guides

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The National Trust Manual of Housekeeping, comp. by Hermione Sandwith and Sheila Stainton. Allen Lane (Penguin Books Ltd., 536 King's Read, London SW10 0UH in association with the National Trust, 1984. 273 pp. About $15, payable in pounds. 17 chapters on all aspects of keeping up a historic house for the National Trust in England. The Foreword says, "It is the first publication to bridge the gap between the old maintenance and modern conservation." the second chapter, on books and documents, is by Nicholas Pickwoad. It covers dusting, handling, shelving, environment, security, protective wrappers, documents with seals, and more. Well written--of course; the author holds a Ph.D. in English literature. The binding is attractive, paper over boards and sewn.

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Pigments for Paper, edited by Robert Hagemeyer. TAPPI Press, Technology Park/Atlanta, P0 Box 105113, Atlanta, CA 30348. 1984. 292 pp. An introductory text as well as a practical reference on pigment technology, doing for the paper industry about what Elaine Koretsky' s Color for the Hand Papermaker does for the craft.

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Color for the Hand Papermaker, by Elaine Koretsky. Carriage House Press, Brookline, MA, 1983. 2 v. Regular ed. $35, special ad. $200. LC# 83-62415; ISBN 0-9612216-0-7 (reg. ed.) & 0-9612216-3-1 (spec. ed.).

This is a manual for the coloring of fibers and pulps for hand papermaking. Part 1, a bound 90-page volume, covers the range of potential colorants, both pigments and dyes. Procedures, equipment, cost, materials and safety are described in detail. There is a glossary, bibliography, list of suppliers, annotation and index. Permanency of color is examined closely, and methods given by which papermakers and artists can easily determine the light-fastness of their own works. Part 2, unbound on stiff paper, consists of 89 lab sheets, one for each colorant. Both parts are on acid-free buffered paper. The special edition contains 148 handmade paper samples.

Ms. Koretsky began the research for this manual in 1979, when she was awarded a grant by the National Endowment for the Arts for the initial stages of the project. She has broken much new ground in carrying through this work.

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Second edition, with index, of Archives & Manuscripts: Conservation. A Manual on Physical Care and Management, by Mary Lynn Ritzenthaler. Chicago: Society of American Archivists, 1983 [1984?]. 151 pages, paper. $10 SAA members, $14 others. Write SAA, 600 5. Federal, Suite 504, Chicago, IL 60605.

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Archives & Manuscripts: Administration of Photographic Collections, by Mary Lynn Ritzenthaler, Gerald J. Munoff and Margery Long. Society of American Archivists, 600 5. Federal, Suite 504, Chicago, IL 60605. 1984. 176 pp. $14 to members, $18 to others. Stresses the development of systems to organize, access, and preserve entire collections, rather than the use of an item-by-item approach. Well illustrated, partly in color; includes a bibliography, glossary, supply list, and index. The chapter on preservation is 36 pages long and includes many drawings and diagrams, as well as photographs. The author of the chapter is Ritzenthaler, whose last book (another manual in this series) was favorably reviewed in this Newsletter and has become the fastest-selling publication in SAX history: Archives & Manuscripts: Conservation.

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Restoration of Leather Bindings, by Bernard Middleton. Revised edition. Adamantine Press, 1984. About $25. Includes new chapter on rebinding of antiquarian books, as well as significant revisions.

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Videotape, "Ebrü: Paper Marbling in the Turkish Tradition." Don Guyot demonstrates how to prepare the raw materials and how to execute ii patterns. About 25 mm.; with explanatory pamphlet. $150 for 1/2" VHS, Betamax; $170 for 3/4" U-Matic. Order from Istor Productions, 2414 N.E. 45th Ave., Portland, OR 97213. Review copies available for $25, which can be applied to purchase price.

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A letter from AN Editor Ellen McCrady to Charles A. E. Brandt in April 1984, on the subject of standards, appears in the fall Newsletter of the Canadian Bookbinders and Hook Artists Guild. It describes the efforts of various groups related to conservation to establish standards, tries to explain their relative lack of success, and recommends the formal standards-setting procedure used by ASTM and NISO.

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Conservation and Preservation of Library Materials: a Program for the University of Connecticut Libraries, by Jan Merrill Oldham. $10 + $1 postage. Make check out to Homer Babbidge Library and send to Diane Castillo, Homer Babbidge Library, U-5, the University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT 06268. A comprehensive and detailed study of care and handling problems in a medium-sized research library, with broader value for the library community as a working model for institutions dealing with similar problems. Includes recommendations.

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